Rasouli, B., Andersson, T., Carlsson, P. - O., Grill, V., Groop, L., Martinell, M., et al. (2017). Use of Swedish smokeless tobacco (snus) and the risk of Type 2 diabetes and latent autoimmune diabetes of adulthood (LADA). Diabet Med, 34(4), 514–521.
Abstract: AIMS: It has been suggested that moist snuff (snus), a smokeless tobacco product that is high in nicotine and widespread in Scandinavia, increases the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Previous studies are however few, contradictory and, with regard to autoimmune diabetes, lacking. Our aim was to study the association between snus use and the risk of Type 2 diabetes and latent autoimmune diabetes of adulthood (LADA). METHOD: Analyses were based on incident cases (Type 2 diabetes, n = 724; LADA, n = 200) and population-based controls (n = 699) from a Swedish case-control study. Additional analyses were performed on cross-sectional data from the Norwegian HUNT study (n = 21 473) with 829 prevalent cases of Type 2 diabetes. Odds ratios (OR) were estimated adjusted for age, BMI family history of diabetes and smoking. Only men were included. RESULTS: No association between snus use and Type 2 diabetes or LADA was seen in the Swedish data. For Type 2 diabetes, the OR for > 10 box-years was 1.00 [95% confidence interval (CI), 0.47 to 2.11] and for LADA 1.01 (95% CI, 0.45 to 2.29). Similarly, in HUNT, the OR for Type 2 diabetes in ever-users was estimated at 0.91 (95% CI, 0.75 to 1.10) and in heavy users at 0.92 (95% CI, 0.46 to 1.83). CONCLUSION: The risk of Type 2 diabetes and LADA is unrelated to the use of snus, despite its high nicotine content. This opens the possibility of the increased risk of Type 2 diabetes seen in smokers may not be attributed to nicotine, but to other substances in tobacco smoke.